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Happy Valentine’s Day!

What better time than Valentine’s Day to invest at least a few minutes – better yet a few hours or even the whole day – rebuilding your relationship!

After a few years together, many couples find themselves getting caught in a bit of a rut – not a sexual rutt, but a boring or frustrating rut. Basically, after being together for a while – could be a month, a year, or a number of years – the novelty just wears off.

This is quite natural and consistent with the notion of habituation or tolerance – like needing more to get the same effect. But when the romance, intimacy, and sexual arousal of the relationship starts to dwindle, it can get pretty frustrating. The temptation to seek novelty outside the relationship can be expected to accompany this shift.

It might seem paradoxical to suggest that spending more time with your romantic partner – even if it’s been a while since you were intimate – could bring back a feeling of chemistry between you. But clearly, if we make an effort to do something we both enjoy together, it can feel pretty good and can re-energize what was starting to feel like a dwindling relationship only yesterday.

Another route to rebuilding your relationship – and bringing more energy into it – is to spend less time together. Yap! Spending time doing something you want to do while apart can re-energize your desire to be together. “Absence makes the heart grow fonder,” as they say.

The trick with spending time apart is to come back together with something new to share and be open to each other having enjoyed spending time apart.

I can hear the naysayers now! No, Jack or Jill is supposed to miss me the whole time we’re apart….I would respond that it sounds like you don’t want Jack or Jill to have a pleasant life unless you are right there side by side!  I don’t think this is love. Instead, it’s more likely to be dependence and insecurity. A related folk adage here is “If you love something, set it free! If it comes back, it’s yours; if not, it never was.”

Here are some more tips for rebuilding your relationship:http://blogs.psychcentral.com/positive-psychology/2012/02/what-do-you-look-for-in-a-partner-how-to-find-love-this-valentines-day/

Even if you’re apart today, remember to appreciate your time apart while somehow finding a way to renew the relationship you have with the special other(s) in your life.